Sadly, ferrets are very misunderstood animals. There is a common misconception that ferrets can be difficult to care for and are often mistaken for rodents. This, however, cannot be farther from the truth – not only do ferrets make lovable pets, but they are also very effective working animals.
Ferrets originate from the carnivore family of the Mustelidae and their closest ancestor is the European polecat so they are very curious and love to explore, often assessing most items with their mouths and nose. They rely on their senses of smell, taste and hearing as their eyesight is quite poor.
Ferrets use postures and vocalisations to indicate emotions. It is important to explore the behaviours of your breed of a ferret to ensure that you understand key emotions such as when they are feeling excited, an excited ferret will make a ‘dook’ sound.
As well as using smell to hunt, ferrets use scent to communicate with each other. They can tell if another ferret is male or female, strange or familiar and if the mark was left recently or a day ago, just by sniffing a mark left by the other ferret’s bottom.’
They become familiar with their ferret friends by using smell to hunt and communicate with each other. Don’t panic if your ferret sleeps between 18 and 20 hours a day don’t panic, that’s the sign of a healthy Ferret.
Caring for a ferret
A ferret can be both great fun and a treasured companion, but it is also important to realise that they can be quite challenging and a big responsibility and long-term commitment – healthy ferrets can live up to 10 years of age, however, their average lifespan is 6 years.
It is also very important to provide your ferret with a healthy, balanced diet which is why Alpha Ferret Feast has been carefully formulated as a premium complete diet to meet all the nutritional needs of working, pet and show ferrets of all ages.
Why Alpha Feeds Ferret food?
- 36% Protein
- Wholesome Ingredients – No Added Artificial Colours or Flavours
- High-Quality Chicken & Fish Proteins
- Fish Meal & Linseed for Essential Omega 3 Oils – Aids Healthy Skin & Coat Condition
- Crunchy Extruded Nugget to Help Clean Teeth
- Nutritionally Formulated for Health and Vitality
- Easy to Digest and Highly Palatable
- With Taurine Added
It is also very important to provide your ferret with a healthy, balanced diet. Ferrets are obligate carnivores, which means they need to eat meat to survive. That being said, they should never be given cat or dog food, which is full of plant matter that ferrets cannot digest.
Be sure to stick to dry food specifically provided for ferrets or indeed, provide fresh meat. Ferrets are also lactose intolerant and dairy can really harm them. Feeding your ferret a healthy, balanced diet will ensure they are fit to endure a full day’s work.
Where to find them:
The best place to find a working ferret is with a reputable breeder. Always be sure to visit the breeder, see how they keep their kits and also how knowledgeable the breeder is. A good breeder will be able to provide advice, support and the equipment you will require.